Reimagining Your Bed
Published in The Huffington Post
Typically undercover by day and out of awareness throughout the night, the bed is the most primordial of furnishings in our lives. We are conceived, born and die in a bed. We make love, sleep, dream, heal and are entertained in our bed. We burrow deeply into it in times of sorrow and awaken to a new day from it each morning.
Our very first bed was a cradle of loving arms with an undulating soft chest as a mattress. It was alive, sensitive and responsive to our subtlest needs. Sleep was a dynamic process, a natural collaboration between the sleeper and this living cradle. Unfortunately, this sense of an organic sleep experience is quickly forgotten as we grow up. The bed devolves into a thing – an inert piece of furniture or equipment where we stash the body for its overnight recharge.
I don’t mean to sound animistic and suggest the bed is alive in any literal sense, but I am suggesting that it is more like a vehicle than a static piece of furniture. Children, who intuitively sense that sleep and dreams carry them to another world, are frequently drawn to beds in the shapes of cars, trains, wagons, boats and airplanes. Although beds and vehicles may appear to be complete opposites in one respect, they actually have much in common. Both transport us to another place. And although often taken for granted, both cars and beds require a dynamic relationship with their owners. Just as we think about car and driver, it’s useful to think in terms of the bed and sleeper.
A good car integrates performance, comfort and safety. We expect it to perform – to provide us with reliable and efficient transportation while requiring minimal maintenance. Of course, we also prefer that it transport us comfortably. And we fully expect that it will do so safely. Cars can also be personalized, allowing us to configure seats, mirrors, sound systems, GPS, temperature, and other variables.